Technology is the future. Certainly at Windesheim, where the next generation of technology professionals are being prepared for a future in technology. Windesheim offers approximately twenty full-time and part-time courses. Windesheim doesn’t just teach and train students. Within the university of applied sciences, practice-oriented research is carried out by various research groups, in collaboration with companies. In the field of the smart manufacturing industry – such as automation, robotics or digitisation – Perron038 is the place to be. An already successful collaboration, has recently been intensified with an official partnership.
“Today’s education requires us to continuously innovate,” says Egon van der Veer, Director of Technology at Windesheim. “Within our teaching programs and even outside the walls of our school building. Perron038 is one of the places that we use as a practice and teaching location for our students. Furthermore, we use Perron038 to innovate and co-create with companies in the manufacturing industry. We really see that it works. It is a place where (part-time) students, researchers and lecturers enjoy going to. In terms of results it also pays off: our collaboration with the business community is increasing and getting better, a reason why we want to invest in this collaboration at Perron038 for the next 5 years.”
A commitment that Marius Woldberg, the quartermaster at Perron038 is very satisfied with. “Technicians, students, researchers and lecturers work at Perron038 on joint innovation projects. For example developing demonstrators, prototypes and modules of high-tech machines. It is great to see how the partners inspire each other and help each other along the way. We are pleased that Windesheim, which plays a major role in education and research in this area, is contributing to this.”
INTERACTION WITHIN EDUCATION, RESEARCH AND PRACTICE
In addition to lectures and students, researchers from Windesheim University of Applied Sciences also regularly commute between the campus and Perron038. At Windesheim University of Applied Sciences, they are assigned to a research group: Polymer Engineering or Industrial Automation & Robotics. One of the regular faces at Perron038 is Geert Heideman, an associate professor in Polymer Engineering who conducts research in Additive Manufacturing, also known as industrial 3D printing. According to Heideman, the very first theme that Windesheim actively worked on at Perron038: “In 2020 we purchased a large 3D metal printer, which we deliberately installed at Perron038. Together with the partners involved, we are investigating the applicability of this technique in production processes.”
According to Heideman, all parties are enthusiastic about the collaboration and the first results. “It is unique for lecturers and students that they can work with different high-tech machines and robots in one place. The partners who make the technology available share their knowledge and experience and connect with students more and more quickly. An interaction that yields a lot of results!” Following the research of Geert Heideman, Windesheim has also established the Industrial Automation & Robotics lectorate. It’s an Associate degree program in Industrial Automation and Robotics. Furthermore, Windesheim has started a minor project called ‘Factory of the Future’, which is carried out at Perron038.
KNOWLEDGE AND RESOURCES IN ONE PLACE IN AND FOR THE AREA
The innovation center Perron038 has filled itself with an arsenal of advanced robots and machines in the last year and a half. In March this year, Perron038 welcomed the arrival of robot number 13: with a cake, including candles which were – of course – blown out by the robot itself. “With all these robots, machines and knowledge bundled in one place, we can build the know-how of how to use this equipment in the manufacturing industry together with students and professionals. This goes much further than just the companies involved. We develop theory, methods and practical experiences for SMEs throughout the east of the Netherlands,” says Windesheim Director of Technology Egon van der Veer.